Joyful waiting…

Happy Gaudete Sunday! This week, we light the pink candle to symbolize our joy in the coming of Christ. The word gaudete comes from the Latin word meaning “rejoice.” We see it in Philippians 4:4: “Rejoice in the Lord always. I shall say it again;
rejoice!” (NABRE)

What’s different about this Sunday, other than the priest’s garments and the pink candle? It’s a day set aside to remember that, while we are waiting upon the Lord, we are joyful in the hope of his coming.

Matthew 2:10-11 recalls the nativity scene when the wise men first saw Mary and the child that would save the world. What a joyful moment, right?

We can also turn to Psalm 146, verse 5: “Blessed are those whose help is the God of Jacob, whose hope is in the Lord, his God” (NABRE).

Consider this: where is the joy in your life? What is your source of true happiness? Does it come from God or is it of this world?

Imagine for a moment that you are one of the wise men. Your work-life for many years has consisted of looking for signs of the coming of the savior. To be honest, you’re living in a bit of darkness and perhaps losing hope. Then you see the star and follow it for many miles — not an easy journey, I might add. And what do you see when you get there? A lowly manger, likely very dirty and filled with animals, and a baby.

This is one of my favorite Bible stories to imagine. What do you think those men thought? Where they confused at first? Was it what they expected to find? Did it take them a while to believe what they were seeing and to know in their hearts that this was the one the prophets foretold? Imagine the joy they experienced once they did understand and believe!

The joy of the Lord is ours if we abide in him. Consider ways you could grow closer to God and the joys you might experience if you did.

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